With Memorial Day — aka the unofficial start of summer — just around the corner, there's no better time to update your beauty look for the season. The most natural change you can make? Switching up your lip color. But for us women of color, where can we shop for the perfect shades?

Let's be honest… in the world of beauty, women of color are often overlooked. Which is interesting given studies show that we are one of the top spending populations. So my question is, why wouldn't a company want to get our hard working coins?! Not only are companies missing out on the money, but we are missing out on beauty products — all because we're limited to shades that won't work with our complexions. Of course, I can acknowledge that some brands are getting hip like, Fenty Beauty, Beauty Bakerie, and Juvia's Place. Over the years, we have seen a slight increase in cosmetic retailers looking out. Enter Mented Cosmetics, a cosmetic company created by women of color for women of color.

While I live for a bold or bright red lip from time to time, I love to rock a nude/neutral lip for most workdays. Off the shelf nude lippies rarely work for me, and I am sure women with similar and darker skin tones can agree. But now, thanks to Mented, I have a collection of "nudes” that I can rock on any occasion. Birthed from the same frustrations as consumers, co-founders of Mented Cosmetics, Amanda E. Johnson and KJ Miller, took matters into their own hands — or kitchens, if you will. Mented, short for "pigmented," is a cosmetic company created with Black and Brown women in mind.

In their Matte Duos collection, Mented offers nine shades that are sure to foot the bill for the full range that is melanin magic. I was able to test and try eight of them. Some of the colors in this collection include Dark Night, Foxy Brown, Mented #5, Dope Taupe, Pretty in Pink, and Nude LaLa

Firstly, I have to say that I love all of these names. As a set, these lipsticks and liners are super moisturizing, go on smooth, are well saturated in color, and come in super stylish, sleek tubes. In addition, they don’t leave any harsh lines or cracks on my lips and blend very well with their matching liner. What more could you ask for in a lipstick set? So, check out the collection below, revel in all of their pigmented glory, and get those lips popping for summer, sis.

1. BROWN BARE MATTE LIPSTICK DUO – $28

Photo: Mented Cosmetics

2. MENTED #5 MATTE LIPSTICK DUO – $28

Photo: Mented Cosmetics

3. PRETTY IN PINK MATTE LIPSTICK DUO – $28

Photo: Mented Cosmetics

4. PEACH PLEASE MATTE LIPSTICK DUO – $28

Photo: Mented Cosmetics

5. FOXY BROWN MATTE LIPSTICK DUO – $28

Photo: Mented Cosmetics

6. DOPE TAUPE MATTE LIPSTICK DUO – $28

Photo: Mented Cosmetics

7. BRAND NUDE MATTE LIPSTICK DUO – $28

Photo: Mented Cosmetics

8. NUDE LALA MATTE LIPSTICK DUO – $28

Photo: Mented Cosmetics

*Disclaimer: Mented Cosmetics was kind enough to send me over some products for review. This post is not sponsored, and all of my opinions are my own.


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